Wilson and Plame: The whistleblowers who waited too long to blow the whistle

Ten years after Colin Powell lied to the UN Security Council to help start the war on Iraq, Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame recount some of the events that led to war, but the final line of their commentary is perhaps all they needed to say:

We did not do nearly enough to prevent this tragedy perpetrated on Iraq, on the world, and on ourselves.

On January 28, 2003, President Bush said: “The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.”

Joe Wilson knew at that time that Bush was lying, but he waited until July 6, 2003 before speaking out.

When Valerie Plame heard Powell lying to the UNSC she kept quiet. She didn’t want to lose her job at the CIA.

How many other careerists around Washington are there, who when their consciences told them to speak out, decided to put their material and professional interests first and remain silent — even when as a consequence, hundreds of thousands of people ended up losing their lives?

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

3 thoughts on “Wilson and Plame: The whistleblowers who waited too long to blow the whistle

  1. Norman

    All things considered, Wilson & Plame should consider themselves lucky to still be alive today. After all, lessor individuals have met their maker, sooner then they thought.

  2. delia ruhe

    Yes, there’s plenty of blame to go around — and I’m not excusing any of it. But you’ll have to admit that the Bush-Cheney administration’s application of the politics of fear, combined with the national trauma of 9/11, cast a potent pall over the country. Plame did not merely stand to lose her job, had she spoken out earlier; she also stood to lose her employability. As for Wilson, given the number of “disappearances” after 9/11 (albeit mostly of Arab ancestry), had reason to fear for his life.

    Review the PATRIOT Act.

  3. Paul Woodward

    Some people might have had reason to fear disappearing — but not a former U.S. ambassador. And the couple did indeed get punished for Wilson speaking out. My guess is that by the time JW revealed what he knew, he couldn’t bear keeping it secret any longer, so it was more confession than revelation.

Comments are closed.